Tony Award nominee 33 Variations chronicles the story of a musicologist suffering from Lou Gehrig’s disease as she works to solve music’s greatest mystery and her relationship with her daughter in the final months of her life. Separated by two hundred years, her obsession parallels that of Ludwig van Beethoven and might, for a moment, make time stand still. Drama, memory and music combine in this extraordinary American play about passion, parenthood and the transformative power of beauty.
CAST presents the Regional Premiere of 33 Variations by Moises Kaufman, author of Gross Indecency and The Laramie Project.
Performances are November 23 through December 23, 2012.
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings at 8:00 p.m.
Select matinees at 2:30 p.m.
No late seating.
Charlotte Observer: Whether or not you like classical music, whether or not you care about history, whether or not you’re caught up by medical dramas or mysteries or parent-child conflict, you’ll find food for thought here if you’re interested in humankind at all.
Creative Loafing: At the heart of Kaufman’s drama, we find Ludwig van Beethoven, already going deaf when we first see him in his declining years – famously driven and difficult despite his poverty. But we don’t encounter the great German composer until we become well-acquainted with American musicologist Katherine Brandt, her daughter Clara, and a young male nurse, Mike Clark, who falls for the wayward daughter while treating the resolute mother.
Arts a la Mode: Harris is spellbinding as Brandt; she captures the admirable qualities of the ailing scholar’s feverish devotion to Beethoven’s life and work, yet illuminates also its deleterious effects on her family and possibly even her health. Her carriage and demeanor, required by Brandt’s increasing sickness, shifts as the play goes on, and her movement from capable, confident scholar to near-paralysis is gripping.